Denver Green Roof Initiative

Denver Green Roof Initiative

Grassroots Campaign attempting to lower Denver’s climate and environmental impact


Denver, CO, USA. The Denver Green Roof Initiative is a grassroots campaign comprised solely of volunteers who are striving to create a new building code, I-300, requiring large buildings across Denver to dedicate a portion of their roof to solar or vegetation.

By now, most of you who follow the green roof universe have heard of the Denver Green Roof Initiative. Hear founder Brandon Rietheimer talk about what drove him and handful of friends to take up the cause, and start what is becoming a small but devoted movement in Denver! This new generation of green roof leaders coming out of the West may just turn out to be the tipping point!

All growing cities have areas for concern. Our mission is to solve Denver’s growing problems with one simple solution, Solar and Green Roofs across the City. These volunteers have worked tirelessly and were able to gather the number of signatures necessary to be placed on the Denver County, November 7, 2017 ballot.

The Denver Green Roof Initiative, if passed, will create a new building ordinance requiring all new buildings, building additions, and all roof replacements for buildings over 25,000 sqft to dedicate a portion of their roof to green space or a combination of green roof and solar. This ordinance will affect over 3,000 buildings throughout Denver County and any new construction after January 1, 2018. In order to assure that vegetation will survive this climate, technical standards are included in this ordinance in great detail. These technical standards require thorough planning, installation requirements and maintenance plans. A green roof technical advisory board will also be established to ensure the long term success of this initiative.

Read about the Proposition.

Green Roofs for Healthy Cities (GRHC) and the Green Infrastructure Foundation recently conducted an aggregate cost-benefit study tailored to the city of Denver based on a 15 year implementation scenario which estimates 57.5 million square feet of new green roofs across the city and predicts costs and benefits.  Read the Study at the Living Architecture Monitor.

GRHC is also planning a Symposium in Denver for November 2 to help dispel myths and engage stakeholders in the costs and benefits. A strong industry showing at the symposia will greatly help the cause. Jeff Joslin, the architect of the San Francisco green roof ordinance, will be the keynote speaker.